Winners announced for The Ivors Composer Awards 2019

Anna Meredith and Erika Fox were mong those honoured with Ivor Novello Awards for Innovation and Lifetime Achievement.

Bekki Bemrose
  • By Bekki Bemrose
  • 5 Dec 2019
  • min read
Anna Meredith and Erika Fox were among those honoured with Ivor Composer Awards for Innovation and Lifetime Achievement.

The ceremony took place last night (Wednesday) at the British Museum in London and were presented by BBC Radio 3’s Kate Molleson and Tom Service.

This year 91 percent of those who received awards are first time winners and the majority (54 percent) were presented to female composers.

The awards recognised a diverse range of work from a Trombone Concerto inspired by a recently-discovered illuminated manuscript to a chamber opera telling the story of the African freedom fighter Harriet Tubman.

A sound art experience designed to be listened to whilst walking along the banks of the River Tyne and an educational project which champions the importance of music education for children are among the winners of the prestigious awards also triumphed at the ceremony.

Now in its 17th year, the Ivors Composer Awards celebrate and honour the best new works by UK contemporary composers in Classical, Jazz and Sound Art.

The awards are sponsored by PRS for Music and in association with BBC Radio 3, which provides exclusive broadcast coverage.

The Ivor Novello Awards were presented across eleven nominated categories that included jazz composition, works for chamber ensemble and those written for Amateur or Young Performers.

Additionally, two composers were recognised for their wider contribution to music through the presentation of Ivor Novello Awards for Innovation and Lifetime Achievement.

Crispin Hunt, chair of The Ivors Academy, says: ‘It is a privilege for The Ivors Academy to honour these exceptional composers, and we’re especially delighted to have so many first-time winners this year. The works recognised today - and the creators behind them - adventure far into the evolving musical landscape. We’re thrilled to award such a rich variety of talent. Our congratulations go out to all the nominees and winners.’

Alan Davey, controller, BBC Radio 3, comments: ‘At Radio 3 we believe arts and music are an essential part of what it means to be human. That’s why we’re proud to support innovators in contemporary music as the broadcast partner of The Ivors Composer Awards – it’s part of our commitment to experimental music and pushing boundaries of sound, and through that, understanding. Congratulations to all the winners and those on the short list, without you sharing new ideas and pushing the whole musical scene forward, the world would be a less interesting place musically.’

Nigel Elderton, chairman, PRS for Music: ‘Congratulations from all of us at PRS for Music to all of the winners and nominees especially those who have won an Ivor Novello Award for the first time, it was an honour to celebrate their achievements this evening. Thank you for the fantastic music you create, and I hope this evening is one of many excellent moments in your careers.’

All the winning composers are members of PRS for Music.

The winners of the 2019 Ivors Composer Awards are:
Amateur or Young PerformersThe Salamander and The Moonraker by Edward Gregson
Chamber EnsembleFlute Concerto by Dai Fujikura CHORAL Pocket Universe by Geoff Hannan
Community or Educational ProjectConvo by Charlotte Harding
Jazz Composition for Large EnsembleJumping In by Laura Jurd
Jazz Composition for Jazz EnsembleThere is a Crack in Everything by Alison Rayner
OrchestralThe Book of Miracles (Trombone Concerto) by Gavin Higgins
Small Chamber - Leafleoht by James Weeks
Solo or DuoInvisible Cities by Charlotte Bray
Sound ArtAeons: A Sound Walk for Newcastle by Martin Green
Stage WorksHarriet (‘Scenes in the life of Harriet Tubman’) by Hilda Paredes
Innovation – Anna Meredith MBE
Lifetime Achievement – Erika Fox